FGCU Uses Solid Defense to Sweep Upstate
Ft. Myers, Fla. – Florida Gulf Coast limited USC Upstate to seven hits and made several strong defensive plays en route to sweeping the Spartans Thursday night in an A-Sun softball doubleheader at the FGCU Softball Complex. The Eagles won by scores of 3-1 and 2-0.
Upstate fell to 32-9 overall and 4-6 in the A-Sun with the loss. The Spartans will wrap-up the Florida road trip with a doubleheader at Stetson Saturday afternoon at 4:00. Florida Gulf Coast improved to 23-21 overall and 6-2 in the league.
"Our hitting is not where it needs to be right now," said Upstate head coach Chris Hawkins. "As soon as we get back hitting the way know how to hit and get where we need to be, things will be a lot easier."
Upstate took a hard-luck loss in the first game as starter Morgan Childers (Kings Mountain, N.C.) gave up just one hit, but FGCU took the game by a 3-1 score. FGCU started the scoring in the first inning when Tori Williams walked to leadoff the inning and later scored on Courtney Platt's sacrifice fly. The Eagles made it a 3-0 score on Kayla Gabel's two-run home run to right in the second inning. The hit would be the only one of the game for the Eagles.
Upstate got a run back in the top of the fifth inning when Katelyn Molkenthin (Valrico, Fla.) scored on a throwing error by the FGCU centerfielder after Kim Brasil (Mississauga, Ontario) singled. Brasil moved up to second on the play, but was stranded on second after FGCU retired the next two Spartan batters.
Upstate put a runner on base in the sixth and two in the seventh, but couldn't push anything across as FGCU took the win.
Childers took the loss, allowing three runs on just one hit with four strikeouts. She fell to 23-5 on the year. FGCU starter Catherine McDaniel went the distance, allowing one unearned run on four hits to improve to 11-9 on the year.
Upstate's hitting woes continued in the second game. The Spartans only put up three hits and went scoreless in the 2-0 loss.
Upstate starter Hannah Alexander had a solid outing. She allowed two runs on seven hits with four strikeouts. She fell to 9-4 with the loss. FGCU starter Stephanie Sullivan went the distance, tossing seven innings and allowing three hits with four strikeouts to improve to 4-5.
After three scoreless innings, FGCU jumped on top with a run in the fourth inning on Mariah Fernandez's RBI single. The Eagles made it a 2-0 game on Platt's solo home run in the sixth.